Alabama’s state flower is the beautiful Camellia. It may have only a few petals or it may have many, as in the example shown. Some Camellias look almost like roses, while others look like giant carnations. Camellias come in white, many shades of pink, and red. They may also be lavender, or mottled pink and white. In the far east, a true yellow camellia is grown. Camellias are evergreen, a tree, with thick, usually glossy leaves. Under ideal growing conditions, camellias grow rapidly, sometimes reaching twenty feet. The Camellia became the official state flower of Alabama in 1999.
Alaska’s state flower is the modest little Alpine Forget-me-not. Forget-me-nots are tiny flowers that grow in clusters, often carpeting the ground in early spring to mid-summer. They are usually blue or lavender, and more rarely, pink or white. The forget-me-not, which is a perennial, does best in moist soil. It grows well in gardens, preferably in semi-shaded areas. The seeds form in small pods, which may catch on the clothing of passers- by, and so be spread to new locations. The Forget-me-not became Alaska’s official state flower in 1917.
Arizona’s state flower is the Saguaro Cactus. The cactus blooms for about a month each year, in early spring. Each evening the blooms appear, at the top of the cactus ‘arms’. The following day, these blooms will die and the following evening a new batch of blooms will appear. The individual blooms are about three inches across, and are milky white with golden centers, and a lovely scent. If the flowers are pollinated, they will produce a luscious fruit with a red center. This fruit provides food for many birds and desert creatures. The fruit is sweet and jelly like, and is enjoyed for its taste as well as for its nutritious value. The Saguaro Cactus became Arizona’s official state flower in 1931.
Arkansas’s state flower is the Apple Blossom. These lovely blossoms form in clusters. The pink outer petals open onto a white interior. Every spring, thousands travel to see the apple trees bloom. When pollinated, the trees will provide crops of apples, for which the state was once famous. Today, the United States produces over seven percent of the world’s apples, with Arkansas producing about one percent of the U.S. crop. The city of Lincoln hosts the states’s annual apple festival. The Apple Blossom became Arkansas’s state flower in 1901.
California’s state flower is the California Poppy, also known as the Cup Of Gold. These dainty flowers are a favorite in gardens and spreads rapidly in wilder areas. The four-petaled blooms range from yellow to deep orange, each growing on an individual stem. The foliage is whispy, not unlike carrot greens. California poppies are drought tolerant and thrive in sandy soils. A distant relative of the opium poppy, but containing no opium, the California poppy is used in a variety of herbal medicines. The seeds are used in cooking. The California Poppy became California’s state flower in 1903.
Colorado’s state flower is the Rocky Mountain Columbine. The Rocky Mountain Columbine blooms in spring, and early summer. It prefers cooler areas, moist soil, and partial shade. The outer five pointed petals are sky blue or lavender, and inner five rounded petals are white, or near white. This delicate flower grows in the wild, but is also easily grown from seed. The wild plants are protected and must not be removed from their original site. the Rocky Mountain Columbine became Colorado’s state flower in 1899.
Connecticut’s state flower is the Mountain Laurel, which is also the state flower of Pennsylvania. The Mountain Laurel has lovely, large clusters of fragrant, white or pink blossoms, which show well against its glossy thick leaves. The overlapping petals of the flower present a cup-like appearance until they open into a star. When growing in the wild, the Mountain Laurel prefers cool, moist, well-drained soil, but it does bloom best in sunny locations. In Connecticut and the surrounding area, the Mountain Laurel is an evergreen. The Mountain Laurel became Connecticut’s official state flower in 1907.
Delaware’s state flower is the Peach Blossom. Although it no longer is the most famous ‘peach state’, at one time Delaware was the largest producers of peaches in the United States. It is therefore no surprise that Delaware chose to name the Peach Blossom as its state flower. Although many orchards were destroyed by peach blight in the early 1900s, peach trees still set out a profusion of beautiful blooms to herald the approach of the Delaware spring. The Peach Blossom became Delaware’s official state flower in 1953.
Florida’s state flower is the Orange Blossom. This is not surprising as Florida produces over seventy percent of the U.S. orange crop. In spring the orange trees produce clusters of beautifully-fragrant waxy white blossoms, which perfume the air around the orchards. The orange blossoms, in addition to producing next years orange crop, are also used in the making of perfume, and the orange oil may be used in cleaning products. Orange trees are evergreens. They may produce blossoms while still carrying mature fruit. The Orange Blossom became Florida’s official state flower in 1909.
Georgia’s state flower is the Cherokee Rose. The Cherokee Rose is a hardy specimen, a climbing rose, blooming first in the spring, and also, if conditions are favorable, later in the autumn. The Cherokee rose has waxy white petal, standing out against the glossy green leaves. Originally from China and Taiwan, the Cherokee Rose got its name, legend has it, from the Native Americans who distributed the rose widely along the Trail of Tears. Cultivated vines grow well with minimal care. They are reminiscent of wild roses, with bristly, rather than thorny, stems. The Cherokee Rose became Georgia’s official state flower in 1916.
Hawaii’s state flower is the Puo Aloalo, the Yellow Hibiscus. These lovely flowers are indigenous to all the islands in Hawaii. They come in a wide variety of colors, including whites, yellows, oranges, pinks, and reds, and they bloom virtually continuously. Although many images depict the red hibiscus as the state flower, it is the Yellow Hibiscus that was formally selected as the state flower. In lower elevations, the bushes still grow wild. They are also an integral part of many Hawaiian gardens. The Yellow Hibiscus became Hawaii’s official state flower in 1988.
Idaho’s state flower is the wild Syringa or Mock Orange. The Mock Orange is a wild woody shrub, which can grow to a height of more than eight feet. The name Mock Orange came from the sweet scent of the waxy white flowers, that form in clusters at the end of the branches. Mock Orange bloom from early spring to mid-summer. Native Americans used the Syringa wood for weapons, and the bark for soap. The Syringa or Mock Orange is very distantly related to the Syringa Lilac. The Mock Orange became Idaho’s state flower in 1931.
Illinois’s state flower is the modest little Purple Violet. In 1908, the Purple Violet edged out the wild rose and the golden rod, to become Illinois’s state flower. The Purple Violet has five petals, and looks similar to a slender viola or pansy. The plant is a perennial, growing only about six inches tall. It blooms profusely in the spring, both in the wild, and in cultivated gardens. The violet prefers rich, moist soil, and lots of sunshine. Violets are edible and are frequently used as decorations on pastry. The Purple Violet became the official state flower of Illinois in 1908.
Indiana’s state flower is the Peony. Peonies are luscious many petaled white, pink, or red, flowers, growing on perennial bushes from four to six feet tall. The blooms start as tight round buds, often covered with ants, which are said to facilitate the opening of the bud. Actually, the ants are just feeding on the sticky substance that covers the buds. Peonies do best when they are fed well and the soil is aerated. Peonies are spread by root division, though this should be done only to prevent over-crowding. The Peony became Indiana’s state flower in 1957.
Iowa’s state flower is the five-petaled, Wild Prairie Rose. Wild Prairie Roses bloom on small bushes which die down during the winter and grow anew in spring. The Wild Prairie Rose is a native to Iowa and various other states, as well as several provinces in Canada. Masses of these roses bloom wild in prairie areas as well as on the outskirts of forests and along roadways. The Roses come in a variety of white, and pinks. They do not livelong when picked. The wild Prairie Rose became Iowa’s official state flower in 1897.
Kansas’ state flower is the Sunflower. Sunflowers are huge cheerful yellow blooms that flourish on the sun-laden plains of Kansas. The Sunflower is actually not just one, but many flowers. We first notice the cheerful yellow petals, and then the large central head, which is actually made up of hundreds of small brownish flowers, or florets, which mature into the sunflower seeds, loved by humans and animals alike. Oil from the seeds is popular for cooking and baking. The head of the Sunflower turns during the day to follow the path of the sun. The Sunflower became Kansas’ official state flower in 1903.
Kentucky’s state flower is the Goldenrod. There are many different species of Goldenrod, but all have similar golden plumes, consisting of hundreds of blossoms, at the end of the stems. Goldenrod grows wild in sunny areas and blankets large tracts of ground in mid to late summer. It is a primarily a wild flower, but can easily be cultivated in garden areas, that are sunny and well drained. Goldenrod grows throughout North America, attracting bees and other pollinators. It is also the state flower of Nebraska. The Goldenrod became Kentucky’s official state flower in 1926.
Louisiana’s state flower is the magnificent Magnolia. Louisiana’s Magnolia trees are considered evergreens though they do lose some leaves continuously throughout the year. The fragrant blossoms are large and creamy white, standing out against the glossy green foliage. Other species do produce pink and red blossoms. Magnolias can grow to well over forty feet tall. They need to be planted where their roods can spread without damaging pipes and walkways. Magnolias are pollinated, not by bees, but by beetles. The Magnolia became Louisiana’s state flower in 1900.
Maine’s state flower is the White Pine Cone And Tassel. The White Pine, which once covered vast portions of northeastern America, was devastated by logging operations. Now only about one percent of the original forests remain. The White Pine can reach heights of almost two hundred feet and some specimens have lived for over four hundred years. Because of their great height and straight trunk, White Pines were once known as mast trees. To Native Americans they were known as ‘The Tree Of Peace’. The sap and ‘tar’ of the tree was used by the Natives for medicinal purposes. The wood is still highly prized. White Pine Trees have soft bluish-grey needles, and produce clusters of long, slightly curved, slim cones from four to six inches in length. The needles form the tassel. The White Pine and Tassel is not a flower, but the history of the tree, in the state of Maine, made it important enough to be chosen as the state ‘flower’. The white Pine Cone And Tassel became Maine’s state flower in 1895.
Maryland’s state flower is the Black-eyed Susan. The Black-eyed Susan thrives in sunny areas throughout North America. It is a tough little biennial, or short-lived perennial, that requires little attention in order to grow, and spread. From spring to autumn, Black-eyed Susans brighten fields and roadsides, as well as many gardens,with their brilliant yellow petals. The plant has many uses in traditional medicine. The flowers attract bees and butterflies, and in the wild, the plant provides food for deer and other wildlife. The Black-eyed Susan became Maryland’s state flower in 1918.
Massachusetts’ state flower is the Trailing Arbutus. The Trailing Arbutus, also called the Mayflower and Ground Laural, thrives in sandy soil and grows low to the ground, where it puts out long branches which ‘trail’ along the ground. In early spring, the fragrant waxy white to pink blossoms appear, contrasting pleasingly with its hairy, dark green leaves. The Trailing Arbutus is an herb, and is used as a diuretic, and to treat infections. Although primarily a wild flower, the Trailing Arbutus will grow well in gardens, providing it gets lots of shade. The trailing Arbutus became the official state flower of Massachusetts in 1918.
Michigan’s state flower is the lovely, fragrant Apple Blossom. The Apple Blossom was chosen as state flower, by both Arkansas and Michigan. While Arkansas’s still produces some apples, Michigan now ranks as one of the three top apple-producing states. Apple growing plays a vital role in the economy of Michigan. Many orchards have been family owned for generations, and today’s farmers are dedicated to the production of a healthy crop, grown with concern for the environment and the welfare of orchard workers. The Apple Blossom became Michigan’s state flower in1897.
Minnesota’s state flower is the Pink and White Lady’s Slipper. The Pink and White Lady’s Slipper is a rare little wild flower, protected by Minnesota law, from being picked or unearthed. Also known as the the Queen’s Lady’s Slipper, the Pink and White Lady’s slipper grows in boggy, but open areas, and is difficult to cultivate away from its natural habitat. It blooms only in early spring, and a single plant can live up to fifty years. Loss of habitat makes sightings of the orchid-like little flower, rare. The Lady’s slipper became the official state flower of Minnesota in 1967.
Mississippi’s state flower is the Magnolia, as is Louisiana’s. Both states picture the creamy white Magnolia, though the flowers may also be pink (as above), and red, as well as yellow. Mississippi Magnolia trees are also deciduous. They are often called tulip trees because of the shape of the flower as it opens. The pollen from Magnolias is rich in protein, which attracts the beetles, which in tern pollinate the trees. Magnolia trees are slow getting started, but once established, they can live for over one hundred years. The Magnolia became Mississippi’s official state flower in 1952.
Missouri’s state flower is the Hawthorne. The Hawthorn produces clusters of white blossoms, similar in appearance to apple blossoms. The Hawthorn is a small bush or tree. Once the blossoms have fallen, small apple-like fruit appear, which provide food for birds and small animals. Missouri is home to over eighty species of Hawthorn. The Hawthorne became Missouri’s official state flower in 1923.
Montana’s state flower is the Bitterroot. Bitterroot is a low growing perennial, bearing single blossoms on the end of leafless stems. Bitterroot grows in rocky areas, and the blooms appear in early spring. The flowers are from white to dark pink. The root is bitter to the taste, but Native Americans made it palatable by cooking and mashing it together with berries and meat. They also cleaned and dried the roots, and used them for barter. The seeds of the Bitterroot provide food for small mammals. Bitterroot became Montana’s state flower in 1895.
Nebraska’s state flower is the Goldenrod. Although mostly seen in its golden form, Goldenrod may also be cream-colored. Tall stands of Goldenrod can be found in both dry and wet locations, in woodlands, and along long stretches of seashore. It is a perennial, and, by many, is considered to be a medicinal herb. It is used, primarily in Europe, as a diuretic and for a variety of infections and digestive system problems. Native Americans used it boiled, as an antiseptic and for eczema and arthritis. Unfortunately Goldenrod is one of the primary causes of allergies. Goldenrod became the official state flower of Nebraska in 1985.
Nevada’s state flower is the Sagebrush. Sagebrush is a sturdy little greyish-blue bush or small tree, which bears clusters of yellow flowers in late summer. It is extremely heat tolerant and thrives in the dry areas of the west. Normally the fragrant Sagebrush is only a few feet in height, but in wet areas it can increase to ten feet in size. Sagebrush is a perennial evergreen and acts as a food source for both wild and domesticated animals. Native Americans used Sagebrush for medicinal purposes. The Sagebrush became Nevada’s official state flower in 1967.
New Hampshire’s state flower is the Purple Lilac. The Purple Lilac is a large bush, that puts out cylindrical clusters of very fragrant blossoms in early spring. Lilacs can be pruned into hedges or left to grow into small trees, which can reach heights of over thirty feet. They are very hardy and can live for hundreds of years. The wood of the Lilac is extremely hard and has been used in the making of musical instruments. Lilacs came originally from Europe, and are now one of the nations most popular garden residents. In addition to purple, lilacs also come in white, yellow, pink, and lavender, though the deep purple and lavender are by far the most popular. Lilac wood is excellent for carving and the flowers are used in the making of perfume. The flowers are edible, and also have medicinal value. The Purple Lilac became New Hampshire’s official state flower in 1919.
New Jersey’s state flower is the Purple Violet. Violets bloom in early spring and prefer rich, moist, shaded soil. These tiny gems are among the first harbingers of spring. Although primarily a wild flower, Violets will do well in any shady garden corner. They spread quickly, but can be controlled by thinning. Violets are often used to decorate baked goods, and the leave are used in salads. There are hundreds of different species of Violets, which come in shades of violet, as well as white, and yellow. Most species thrive outdoors. The species that thrives best indoors is the African violet. Some consider the purple Violet a symbol of love, and the white Violet a symbol of innocence. The Violet became New Jersey’s official state flower in 1971.
New Mexico’s state flower is the Yucca Flower. There are many different types of Yucca, which may thrive in hot, dry dessert areas, in many gardens, and also indoors. New Mexico’s Yucca Flowers grow on the end of tall erect stems of the sturdy perennial Yucca Plant. Before opening, the creamy white blossoms have a tulip shape. They hang like beautiful bells from high above the sword-like foliage. The buds open into large six petaled blossoms, which are often used as decorative garnishes. The flowers, and fruit, of some Yuccas, may be eaten raw or fried, the leaves used for weaving, and the roots used for making soap. The Yucca Flower became New Mexico’s state flower in 1927.
New York’s state flower is the Rose. The Rose is the most-loved of all flowers. There are literally hundreds of varieties of Roses, wild, cultivated, miniature, climbing, and bush, of every imaginable size and color, even blue. Roses bloom from early spring to late autumn. In some areas, there are species that will produce blossoms year round. Although some Rose have little scent, most have a heavenly scent that, once inhaled, is never forgotten. To most, the Rose is a symbol of love, evidenced by the fact that it is the most common gift given at Valentines Day. The Rose became New York’s state flower in 1955.
North Carolina’s state flower is the American Dogwood. The American Dogwood is a small deciduous tree, wider that it is tall. The Dogwood grows best in moist soil, in an area, where it gets equal parts of sun and shade. Although the flowers of the American Dogwood are small, they show up beautifully against the tree’s dark green leaves. Dogwood blossoms appear in small and greenish clusters, but each cluster is surrounded by four snowy white, or occasionally pink bracts (specialized leaves), often mistaken for flower petals. The fruit of the Dogwood provides food for birds and small animals. The American Dogwood is also the state flower of Virginia. The American Dogwood became North Carolina’s state flower in 1941.
North Dakota’s state flower is the Wild Prairie Rose, as is Iowa’s. Wild Prairie Roses bloom in profusion in fields, meadows, and along roadsides. The study little rose blooms in clusters, low to the ground, from early spring throughout the summer. The flower has five pink to deep rose petals and a profusion of stamens. The stems are without thorns, and the flower does have a strong rose scent. The petals can be eaten or used as a garnish. Wild Prairie Rose hips, like all rose hips, are rich in vitamin C. The Wild Prairie Rose became North Dakota’s state flower in 1907.
Ohio’s state flower is the Scarlett Carnation. The Scarlet Carnation, the Lamborn Red, looks almost like a small rose except that the petals are serrated. Carnations are a cultivated flower with a lovely scent, and are beautiful in their natural state or as a cut flower. The Red Carnation was chosen as the state flower in honor of President William McKinley, governor of Ohio and later 25th president of the United States. President McKinley loved the Scarlet Carnation, he once received from it’s propagator Dr. Levi Lamborn, after whom the carnation was named. The President always chose the Scarlet Carnation as a boutonniere, and it is said that he was wearing one on the day of his assassination in 1901. The Scarlett Carnation became Ohio’s state flower in 1904.
Oklahoma’s state flower is the Oklahoma Rose. The Oklahoma Rose is a heavily-petaled dark-red tea rose, with a strong fragrance. The blooms are large and the petals are so dark, that at times they appear almost black. In 2004, the Oklahoma Rose replaced the previously chosen mistletoe as the state flower. It is an extremely hardy rose, resistant to a variety of common rose diseases. The Oklahoma Rose became Oklahoma’s state flower in 2004.
Oregon’s state flower is the Oregon Grape. The Oregon Grape is a tall evergreen bush with dark, glossy, holly-like leaves. In the late spring it produces clusters of bright yellow blossoms that will later produce the purple to blue berries – not true grapes – that give it it’s name. The berries, which attract a variety of wildlife, can be used in the making of wines, jams, and jellies. The Oregon Grape is native to coastal regions from British Columbia, in Canada, to the northern parts of California. Herbalists use parts of the plant for medicinal purposes. The Oregon Grape became Oregon’s state flower in 1899.
Pennsylvania’s state flower is the Mountain Laural, as is that of Connecticut. The clusters of flowers, which appear in early spring, and continue into late summer, are from white to pink and almost red, and show beautifully against the dark leathery leaves. The Mountain Laural is poisonous to livestock. It is related to the rhododendron. Although most appreciated in the wild, the popular state flower is often used for landscaping. In spite of the fact that the Mountain Laural is used for medicinal reasons, caution is necessary as it has some unfavorable interactions. The Mountain Laurel became Pennsylvania’s state flower in 1933.
Rhode Island’s state flower is the Common Blue Violet, as is New Jersey’s. Violets, which are commonly blue, but may also be purple, yellow or white, have been cultivated since around 500 B.C. , when a crown of Violets was thought to prevent headache. Parts of the plant are still considered to have medicinal properties and are used to combat pain, as an expectorant, and an antiseptic. The plant provides food for a variety of insect and animals. Both the flowers and the leave can be consumed by humans. The flower is also used in the making of perfume, as well as to flavor foods. The Violet became the state flower of Rhode Island in 1968.
South Carolina’s state flower is the Yellow Jessamine. The Yellow Jessamine is an evergreen vine that produces clusters of yellow trumpet-shaped flowers. Although butterflies are attracted to the fragrant blossoms, all parts of the plant are poisonous to livestock. Growing best in full sun, the plant is used both as a climber, as well as in ground cover. The oil from the plant is used in perfume, as it’s scent is virtually impossible to duplicate artificially. Yellow Jessamine blooms in very early spring. The Yellow Jessamine became the state flower of South Carolina in 1924.
South Dakota’s state flower is the Pasque Flower. The Pasque Flower is a bell-shaped wild flower that ranges in color from white to dark purple, always with a ring of copious bright yellow stamens. The perennial grows low to the ground, in early spring, and prefers south-facing slopes. It is plentiful throughout the west from the northern United States to Alaska. The Pasque Flower is also known as the prairie crocus or prairie smoke, because the hairy stems and leaves give a smoky appearance when the plants grow in groups. The Pasque Flower is used in herbal medicines. The Pasque Flower became the state flower of South Dakota in 1903.
Tennessee’s state flower is the Iris. There are well over one hundred species of Iris, which come in many colors, white, yellows, pink, red, green, lavender to dark purple, blue, and brown. Some Iris are more than one color. Although the petals may be frilled in different manners, the form of the flower is always the same, with three petals hanging down, and three standing erect. Growing from a bulb-like root, the Iris appear in early spring, each erect stem producing upwards of five flowers. One of the most popular cultivated flowers, the Iris lasts well as a cut flower. The Iris became the state flower of Tennessee in 1933.
Texas’s state flower is the Bluebonnet. In early spring, Bluebonnets blanket roadsides and fields throughout the state of Texas, as well as other southwestern states. Extremely drought tolerant, Bluebonnets need well-drained soil to thrive. Masses of blossoms coat the tall central stem, with those at the top of the stalk fading to white. Bluebonnets also come in deep pink, again fading to white at the top of the stalk. Looking at the flowers individually, they do look like tiny blue ladies’ bonnets. Although the germination of Bluebonnet seeds ‘in captivity’ is only about 20 %, Texas Bluebonnets can be grown in home gardens, providing the soil is well drained, the seeds are sown in the late fall, and lightly covered with soil, and providing the gardener has patience. The Bluebonnet became the state flower of Texas in 1901.
Utah’s state flower is the Sego Lily. Tulip-like Sego Lilies, also called Mariposa Lilies, appear in early spring. Each plant produces only a single creamy white blossom on its upright stem. The central part of each of its three petals is beautifully marked in purple and gold, or red and gold. Yellow Sego Lilies are also common. The bulbs of Sego Lilies are eaten by small rodents, and sheep and cattle graze on the foliage. The bulb is palatable and in times past has proven to be a precious food source to pioneers in the area. The Sego Lily became Utah’s state flower in 1911.
Vermont’s state flower is the Red Clover. Red Clover is actually a dome-like cluster of many lovely pink or red flowers, which grow at the end of each erect stem. The plant is only about six to eight inches tall and each cluster of flowers is no more than an inch wide. Grown throughout the northern states as a fodder for livestock, Red Clover has proven to be a rich source of protein and other nutrients. In addition to its value as animal food, Red Clover has proven to have a variety of medicinal properties, for which the blossoms are picked and dried. Although Red Clover is a valuable crop for a variety of reasons, it still grows wild throughout the fields and along the roadsides of Vermont, adding color and beauty to the spring landscape. Red Clover became Vermont’s state flower in 1895.
Virginia’s state flower is the American Dogwood, as it is the state flower of North Carolina. The Dogwood Tree has a distinct bark, that looks more like stacked irregularly shaped blocks that it does conventional bark. It is by this bark that the Dogwood can be distinguished from any other tree. When the small flowers at the center of the four bracts are fertilized, they will produce small green fruit, which ripen to red in the autumn. Although most think of Dogwood as white, many are red, as seen above. The American Dogwood became Virginia’s state flower in 1918.
Washington’s state flower is the Rhododendron Macrophyllum, also called the Coast Rhododendron. This Rhododendron, growing at the edge of forests or in deforested areas, is considered a large bush, or a small tree. It is an evergreen that blooms in the early spring to mid-summer, with large clusters of pink to violet flowers showing well against the large, smooth, leather-like leaves. Coast Rhododendrons can be found from the west coast of Canada, south to California. Rhododendrons are considered toxic to both humans and wildlife. It is illegal to uproot the coast Rhododendron. The Rhododendron Macrophyllum became Washington’s state flower in 1959.
West Virginia’s state flower is the Rhododendron Maximum, also called the Great Laural. This Rhododendron is a large evergreen bush, which can grow to well over thirty feet. They flourish in the wild as well as in home gardens. Blooming in early spring to mid summer, the clusters of flowers are large, closely packed, and showy. Wildly blooming bushes may have flowers in white, pink, or violet. There is also a cultivated variety of purple Rhododendron Maximum. While this bush affords protection for small mammals, it is also toxic if ingested. The Rhododendron Maximum became West Virginia’s state flower in 19o3.
Wisconsin’s state flower is the Wood Violet. Violets are most commonly purple, but they can also appear in blue, white and yellow. Violets are one of the first flowers to appear in early spring and are a joy to hikers and gardeners alike. In the home garden, Violets prefer a shady corner, with moist, but well-drained, soil. The tiny blossoms stand on upright stems, above a bed of dark green (edible) leaves. Violet leaves add nutrition to a green salad. They are also eaten cooked, like early spinach. The Wood violet became Wisconsin’s state flower in 1949.
Wyoming’s state flower is the Indian Paintbrush. The brilliant scarlet of the flower, also aptly called Prairie Fire, shows that spring is well on its way. What appears as the petals of the flower are actually bracts, that hide the real flowers, which are tiny and green. Indian Paintbrush is a partly-parasitic plant, living on the roots of other plants that grows in rocky areas of scrub. Because their life depends on the roots of other plants, Indian Paintbrush is almost impossible to transplant. Usually associated with the color red, Indian Paintbrush can also occur in yellow, orange, or purple. Indian Paintbrush was used by Native Americans for medicinal purposes, and for washing hair. The Indian Paintbrush became Wyoming’s state flower in 1917.